New hospital signs provide clearer information for emergency patients

On arrival to the emergency department, patients will see this sign giving an overview of their journey through the department

One of the signs in an examination room of the urgent care area

Signage in the resuscitation area

First published in News

New signage system has been installed in the emergency department at St George’s Hospital to provide clear information to patients.

A range of signs have been put up around the department to convey essential information to patients at each stage of their care.

The signs, which could help reduce violence and aggression towards staff, use simple language to ensure a consistent and clear message is given to patients and relatives, allowing them to better understand their journey through the department.

St George’s is one of the first emergency departments in the country to implement the new signage system.

A research team will evaluate the success and if deemed successful the signage could be rolled out nationally.

Dr Sunil Dasan, consultant lead for quality and safety in the emergency department, said: “Patients who attend are often anxious about coming to hospital, and having a lack of information only worsens the problem.

“Having this signage in place will give a better understanding of how the department works, which in turn would make patients and relatives less likely to become confused, angry or frustrated about their care in the department.

“We hope this will have a really positive impact on the whole experience that patients and relatives have when they come to hospital in an emergency.”

Chris Howroyd, head of programmes at the Design Council, said: “We’re thrilled to be working with St George’s Hospital.

“Their adoption of this signage system will help to prove that good design can make a real impact in NHS hospitals."

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